The people of Peru have spoken, and they picked Ollanta Humala to be President of their country for the next five years.
I have lots of problems with the guy, based on what I have read. Humala was clearly Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's choice -- Chavez gave him lots of money, which IS after all interference in another country's internal affairs (and against Peruvian law). But, I guess it's OK if the Left does it. Humala some months ago was "just another Leftist Nationalist" in the Chavez / Evo Morales / Rafael Correa / Daniel Ortega / Cristina Kirchner (who else did I forget?) mode. Please bear in mind that Hugo Chavez has done great damage to the oil-rich economy of Venezuela, they have an inflation rate of 30% last I read.
Humala had been tracking towards the "center" in recent weeks, a ploy to win the election by not scaring a segment of the electorate. He was FOR nationalizing the mines some time ago, FOR abrogating the Free Trade Agreements that Peru had signed with other countries, FOR re-writing the Constitution of Peru, etc. Lately he has backed off from those positions.
What will Humala do? I really do not have any idea. Humala getting elected is clearly not a good thing, but does this mean that he will be a dangerous man to the freedoms of Peruvians? How will he treat foreign capital? Lots of unknowns.
And when there are lots of unknowns, investors don't invest. Therefore with great sadness I must issue the below Note:
"To those of you (and you know who you are) who I had asked to consider Peru to be a candidate country to go to if TSHTF here, I have to retract my recommendation. Peru is likely to now have its real estate sector implode, it has been in a bubble for a long time, and Humala's election is likely to destroy confidence in the political and economic leadership of the country. It would likely be wise to wait and see what Humala does before even considering any new investment money (or yourselves) going to Peru permanently."
I had thought that the people of Peru would have been tired of the Leftist crap that has damaged the country twice now in most adults' lifetimes there (in the 1960s when the Generals staged a coup and bought into Socialism and when Peru suffered at the hands of President Garcia (first time)). But, today I saw another demonstration of ETHNICITY always beating GENDER. We saw that here in the USA in 2008 when the African-American women went with Obama vs. Hillary in overwhelming numbers in the Democratic Party's primaries and caucuses. Ethnicity beats gender every time. That is a thought worth mulling over.
Democracy does not always mean wise choices are made by the electorate:
Adolf Hitler was ELECTED by the Germans.
Hugo Chavez was ELECTED by the Venezuelans.
The people do not always get what they expect. They do, however, get what they deserve. Just as we, the American people, have gotten what we deserve for electing someone promising Hope and Change, but instead has done nothing much different than W (except for burdening us with Obamacare), why our Nobel Peace Prize recipient even started another war! And has changed nothing.
As I rant on occasion at Zero Hedge:
NONE of our financial problems have been solved.
NO ONE of any significance has gone to jail since our markets crashed.
Many of you know that I realized a few months ago that "The fix was in" for us in late 2007. I cannot believe I missed the clue: so open and in sight. Barrons, the weekend financial paper, had their semi-annual "Big Money Poll" in October 2007. This is when they get BIG money managers together and ask them to make forecasts. Almost every question is finance related. The one NON-FINANCE question in late 2007 was:
Who will be the next President of the United States:
__ Hillary Clinton
__ Barrack Obama
__ John McCain
__ Mitt Romney
Barack Obama got the plurality (more votes than any of the others, although not the majority). Keep in mind that this was when Obama was relatively UNKNOWN. It looked like Hillary had a LOCK on the Democratic Party's nomination. But, "The Big Money" poll had already picked Obama... Wall $t. had spoken.
Back to Peru. We will just have to wait and see what happens there.
To those who have asked me about Peru as a tourist destination, I still say that Peru is a wonderful and interesting country. Ask ANYONE who has ever been there! It rivals Mexico in its history. The Andes are breathtaking. The people are nice and friendly. The food is very good (choose where you eat wisely though).
I guess my opinion on tourism would be to go SOONER rather than later. Who goes to Egypt anymore as a tourist? Things change. If the economy of Peru starts downward after so many years of growth, promising a great future, well bad things like a growing crime rate (as happened in our Depression in the 1930s) may mean that it would be better to go soon rather than put it off.
And none of us, dear readers is getting any younger. Peru is best seen while healthy and strong.
Ayy mi Peru, mi Peru, como has escogido tan mal hoy dia...
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